The opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Decima Reports. As we look back on 2005, it would be hard to argue that it wasn’t an exciting year in Canadian telecommunications.  The CRTC ruled on a number of key proceedings including price floors, competitor digital network access, and incumbent telco promotions. Of course, we can’t forget about the landmark decision on Voice over IP, which determined that VoIP is equivalent to traditional circuit-switched telephony. This past year will also be remembered for a time when competition in the local residential market began to take hold in a much greater way. Some may say this was a positive year for Canadian telecom, and this was certainly the case for the cablecos and the independent VoIP providers. Their ability to compete for local service customers was enhanced by the VoIP decision.  The incumbent telephone companies, on the other hand, will almost certainly tell you that this year was anything but positive for their industry. Their ability to battle the cablecos and VoIP providers to maintain local service market share was restricted by the same VoIP ruling.  But what can we expect in 2006?  The CRTC will rule on local forbearance and will set the criteria required to spark a forbearance application. It is also likely that it will also forbear from regulation Aliant Telecom’s local service in at least two markets: Halifax and Charlottetown. Bell and Telus are also likely to file forbearance applications.  The Telecommunications Policy Review Panel will also issue its final report in mid-January, but while we hope Canada’s federal politicians act on the recommendations, another minority government could severely water down the major changes required.